There are many, many wonderful things about summertime: the vacations, the warm, sunny weather, and of course, the hot summer hookups. But as wonderful as having some steamy sex in the summer can be, there's one aspect of it that's not so fun, and that's the struggle of figuring out the best way to
have sex with a sunburn — because let's be real, sunburns are going to happen if you're spending a lot of time outdoors.
I might just be bitter because I'm pale AF and have a tendency to burn easily, but IMHO, there's almost nothing worse than the agony of a sunburn. And if that sunburn *also* prevents me from having sex, you're darn right I'm not going to be happy. The good news? I've learned that if you're willing to
get creative in the bedroom, there are still plenty of ways to have super hot sex without irritating your red, painful, sunburned skin.
That being said, you should still be cautious if you choose to get it on while sunburned. "At the end of the day, if you're sunburnt and in pain, just wait it out," Bethany Ricciardi, sex educator and relationship expert with
Too Timid, tells Bustle. "Have your partner give you some space from cuddling those nights and ask them to lather you in aloe. Sex is great and what a turn on that you don't want to let anything stop you from getting it on! But you never want to hurt yourself, so if you're THAT burnt to the point it’s affecting the way you move and perform, I’d take a break until you're better."
However, if you think you can handle a little pain and you're unwilling to let something as trivial as a sunburn get in the way of your sex life, here are eight
sex positions that work best — based on which part of your body is sunburned, of course — according to sex experts.
If Your Back Is Sunburned, Try: Cowgirl
To avoid irritating a sunburned back, you'll want to avoid on-your-back
positions like missionary, and opt instead for a position with the least potential for hands-on-back contact (and remember to remind your partner not to get carried away and touch it in the moment).
"Because you’re probably going to want to avoid lying on your back, your best bet is to stick with positions with you on top," Caleb Backe, health and wellness expert for
Maple Holistics, tells Bustle. "In addition to giving you more tempo control, cowgirl allows you to mix things up with different varieties. Furthermore, besides for giving better access to the G-spot, cowgirl lets you control between deep and shallow thrusting."
If your back is sunburned but you still want to try a
more intimate position, give lotus a shot — but tweak it slightly so your arms aren't wrapped around each other's backs.
"Ask your partner to sit down and cross their legs, then sit on top of them and cross your legs around their hips," Ricciardi says. "You're basically going to be sitting criss-cross-applesauce on each other. Naturally you're probably going to want to wrap your arms around each other so you can really thrust hard and get close with lots of control, but don't! Remember, you're backs are burnt! Instead, lean back away from your partner and use the palms of your hands to balance behind you."
If Your Legs Are Sunburned, Try: Seated Oral
To make sure your partner doesn't accidentally brush up against your sunburned legs in this position, simply spread them a bit wider than you normally would, and have your partner grip your back or the chair —
not your legs — for support.
"Oral sex and related foreplay are essential components for an active sex life,"
sex therapist Gunnar Kortenbach tells Bustle. "Additionally, in the case of major sun damage it may not be wise to have too much of the body rub together, [and] oral sex gives much more control over where one makes sensual contact."
Also Try: Standing Against A Wall
If oral sex isn't your jam, another position that works well if your legs are sunburned is standing up against a wall while your partner penetrates you from behind.
"If one's legs are sensitive to touch, one could do best to avoid lying down at all,"
Kristin Marie Bennion, Certified Sex Therapist, tells Bustle. "Standing up against a wall with a partner positioned from behind can be very pleasurable for many, and if height is an issue, possibly moving to a staircase and bending over slightly can do the trick to avoid touching the legs."
If Your Stomach/Chest Is Sunburned, Try: Reverse Cowgirl
In the event that your chest and/or stomach are burned, reverse cowgirl is a great position to try, because those areas will be facing away from your partner. Just be careful if you opt to lower your body (pictured above) rather than staying upright on top of your partner.
"This position will relieve you of any front body-to-body to contact," Ricciardi says. "Have your partner lay down and get on top of them, with your back facing them. You can rest on your knees and straddle them, or if your shin and knees are also burnt, keep your knees bent upward toward your tummy, and stay balanced on your feet. Tell your partner to put their hands out to you, reach your hands a little back and lock hands with your partner to keep your balance while you bump and grind!"
Another safe option if your front side is burned?
Doggy style — just as long as your partner remembers not to get caught up in the moment and caress your stomach or breasts.
"Simple doggy style is a safe one too if your upper body is burnt," Ricciardi says. "One person gets on their knees and bends over. If your belly and arms are burnt, just don't bend over so much as you might usually. Stick your butt out and try and balance on your hands while you partner comes in from behind. If your shoulders are burnt have them grab your hips, and well, vice versa."
If Your Whole Body Is Sunburned, Try: Mutual Masturbation
For any unfortunate souls who have the displeasure of dealing with a sunburn
all over, it might be safest to try mutual masturbation with your partner, so there's zero skin-to-skin contact.
"If you’re sunburned all over, then the best sex position is not touching at all, aka mutual masturbation," Dr. Lauren Brim, doctor of human sexuality and founder of the
Adult Play Mat. tells Bustle. "The orgasm and post-orgasmic sleep should both help reduce the discomfort of your burn. Pro tip: have your lover use an ice cube as foreplay."
Another pretty safe option? Bending over a chair or sofa — putting your hands on it or a wall for support — and having your partner enter you from behind (while keeping their hands off of you as much as they can stand, of course).
"Use the [sofa] to balance while you bend slightly over, sticking your butt and hips out," Ricciardi says. "When your partner goes in, make sure they remember not to grab your hips (because you're burnt) for strong thrusts! Instead make sure they have a wall or something to put their hand up against so they can balance themselves as well. There’s really no body-to-body contact here expect the penetration taking place!"
Sunburns are never fun to deal with, but the good news is that they don't necessarily have to put a damper on your sex life. As long as you're careful, you can still have steamy hot sex this summer — just remember to apply lots of aloe vera so your sunburn heals ASAP and you can return to doing whatever you like in the bedroom!